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Protestors hurl paint at Iranian leader's car, 13 arrested

ROME, March 10 (AFP) - Thirteen people were arrested Wednesday after protestors hurled paint at a car carrying Iranian President Mohammad Khatami through central Rome, police said. (See photo)

Their identities and nationalities were not immediately disclosed. Police said some were in possession of eggs filled with paint when they were detained. At least two eggs filled with yellow paint hit Khatami's car in the protest.

In another incident, three Iranian nationals were detained in front of the monument to the Unknown Soldier, where Khatami was to lay a wreath, police added.

The three were reportedly seen inflating balloons and carrying posters with slogans hostile to Khatami. Khatami, the first Iranian leader to visit western Europe since the 1979 Islamic revolution, arrived in Italy on Tuesday for a three-day stay.

Security was heightened for the visit, with several main roads closed to traffic, a massive deployment of police and helicopters patrolling overhead.


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